"I always liked Alaska," said the Doctor as the three of them bustled into the TARDIS all wearing thick anoraks and carrying spears. Amy glared at the Doctor as she stripped out of her coat and ran to the main console. She jabbed a few buttons angrily as Rory followed her.
"I want out of here!" She said.
"Out of the TARDIS?" The Doctor asked. "Now, Pond, behave." He leapt to the console and twirled, pressing a few buttons and levers with childish glee.
"You wore your bow tie… To Alaska?" Rory asked, realising that under the Doctor's thick coat and heavy duty boots, he wore his tweed jacket and bow tie.
"Yes, why not?" The Doctor asked. "Out of the way Pond!" He looked at the screen and smiled. "Oh I did enjoy that. Where to next?"
"How about Rio?" Amy asked. "Like you promised."
"Nah!" The Doctor cried. "Rio is boring."
"Not to me it isn't!" Amy cried, shuddering.
"Nose, control your wife!" The Doctor said.
"How?" Rory asked giving the Doctor a look.
"Oh I don't know! Bribe her with chocolate or a new short skirt. Better yet, bribe her with a short skirt and get her a pair of trousers instead!"
"I am still here," Amy said.
"We can fix that," The Doctor said. "Rio did you say?"
"Yes!" Amy cried happily. The Doctor gave a grin and began to move around his magnificent machine. He moved the screen and looked at the symbols, a small furrow appearing on his forehead. He looked at Amy and Rory who were sitting down, snuggled into each other. It warmed his hearts. He turned on the spot to give them privacy and hid behind the column.
"Or, I could perhaps, leave Rio for now and you two could have some time… Alone." The Doctor suggested. "I could nip down to the pool for a couple of laps. Or I could go and play tennis. Mind you, I would rather play tennis with Henry VIII. Oh was he a bad boy and a half. Never found out what I did to upset his daughter Elizabeth. I'm sure I'll find out in due course. Though how would she have recognised me? I was taller then and I had a suit and – I'm rambling now aren't I?" He asked, looking at them sheepishly.
Amy let out a laugh and Rory grinned. "Just a little bit." He said.
"Okay. So answer my question. Shall I drop you off in Rio or do you want me to go swim with the hologram fish?"
"Well yes, the TARDIS can project actual sea-life into the pool. Though I would not recommend it if you are scared with creatures with lots of arms. The Manticorie of Santigania Starline are truly terrifying. Never again. No way." The Doctor stopped. "I'm doing it again aren't I?"
Rory nodded. "The swimming pool, if you don't mind."
The Doctor sighed, he smiled. "Okay. Just don't break anything… And if you do… Do… What… Humans do…" He cleared his throat beginning to blush.
"We promise we won't do it in the control room," Amy reassured him.
The Doctor nodded and clicked some things before typing rapidly into the keyboard. "Okay, that's the old girl stationary. I shall see you in an hour or two."
"Oh… We'll be needing three." Rory said.
"Oh, I really don't want to know." The Doctor said, lowering the lights slightly. He rubbed his hands and began to walk down the stairs. Amy turned to Rory, wrapping her arms around his neck.
"Three hours?" She asked, kissing him. "Feeling rather bold are we today?"
"You better believe it," Rory said kissing her back.
"Sorry kiddilywinks!" The Doctor cried bounding back into the room, Amy turned to look at him as he dropped onto his back and fished something out from under the TARDIS. He held it up. "Screwdriver! The Hologram machine is faulty. AGAIN!" He called to the TARDIS column which replied with a wheeze that sounded almost like laughter. The Doctor shook his head and smiled at the two human's embrace. "Oh… Look at you. Young love… Not a care in the-"
The TARDIS lurched to the right and flung the Doctor onto the console. Everything went dark except for a glowing in the middle.
"Okay," Rory said, as Amy pulled him up. "That hurt. What did you do?"
"Nothing!" The Doctor cried. He was frantically pushing and pulling and tugging everything he could. "POND'S OVER HERE NOW!"
Amy rushed to his side. "What do I do?" She asked.
"Everything," The Doctor said. "Touch everything. Anything that looks important and does some fiddly something, touch it, break it if you must. Get the old bean working."
"What, we've crashed?" Rory asked copying Amy who was running around the console trying to get the ancient ship to breathe life again.
"No, we can't have crashed. Shields were up and we were stationary. The only way is if someone crashed into us and that is highly unlikely." The Doctor said.
"Hello?" called an unfamiliar voice. The Doctor stopped and frowned.
"Did you say something?" He asked staring at Amy and Rory.
"Can anybody hear me?"
"Doctor, I'm hearing voices," Rory said. "That is never a good sign."
"Shush!" The Doctor cried. He stared around. "Show yourself!"
"I… I can't!"
"Why not?" The Doctor raised his sonic screwdriver. "You are in my TARDIS. I have always had a bad experience with aliens entering my ship. So you are not the first and you won't be the last."
"Oh do be quiet you melodramatic old fool!" Cried the voice.
The Doctor paused. "Who is that?" He whispered. "River?"
"Who is River?" Asked the voice.
"I'm warning you!" The Doctor cried. "Tell me who you are and maybe I'll spare you from a horrific end!"
"I'm… I'm called the Time Keeper."
The Doctor stopped. He lowered his screwdriver and stared at the console. "Amy. Rory. Get out."
"We're not leaving you." Amy said stepping forward.
"DO AS I SAY!" The Doctor bellowed, slamming his hand on the console angrily. Rory pulled Amy away by the elbow.
"Come on," He said. He held her hand and pulled her up the stairs to their room. The Doctor was breathing intently, staring at the centre of his ship.
"So very far from home…"
"How did you get here?"
"Psychic star dust."
"You scattered your last thoughts across the stars? So that they could be heard by other Time travellers." The Doctor said. "Genius. And after so long, it would have grown a personality from the one it was psychically linked to. Which means you can answer me…"
"I recognise your name and your title," The Doctor said. "Were you one of the Time Keeper councils?"
"We were many."
"Well… I'm glad to meet you." He smiled sadly, though there was no one present to see it. "And you said your name was-"
"Oh… My name… It seems so silly to think of common courtesies when you are about to die."
"Tell me about it," The Doctor grunted. "So who are you?"
"These are the last words from a dying time lady." Said the voice. "My taken name, like so many before me when we look into the untempered schism of time itself, is the Time Keeper. But my given name, the name bestowed upon me until I reached eight was Harvari, after the Nebula my parents visited… Oh… So long ago. In the original language, Harvari is the word they use for wise and beautiful. There is not a word like it that translates into other languages because they are the only species in the universe to believe that beauty is connected to how wise one is."
"You sound like you might be very beautiful." The Doctor whispered.
"Oh I bet you say that to all the girls,"
The Doctor smiled. "You were one of the Time Council?"
"One of the many." The voice replied. "I was in charge of passing the power of time and space to the living TARDIS. I loved it. I was happy. I got married. I settled down. I had three children. I loved my husband more than time itself, and I loved time. Though the universe has seen many tragedies… It was still beautiful. It still moved with infinite grace. All the movements of the planets, the kindness shown by others in times of need… The knowledge and oh… Oh, the years and years of art."
"A fan of art?"
"Well who isn't?"
"Though I don't know what the humans were thinking. Zebra's cut in half doesn't constitute as art in my mind."
"Ha… No. Of course it wouldn't," The Doctor said.
"You enjoy it?"
"Well that's something we have in common."
"Aside from being both from Gallifrey?"
"What? There is another Time Lord out there?"
"The last? Oh… Yes. Silly me. I forgot that this was my last message."
"What were you hoping for?"
"That a rogue Time Lord would come back and save us. Save us all."
"I'm sorry, but the time war-"
"Is locked. Yes I know. I was one of the many thousands who locked it. It was a grave day for all Time Lords and Ladies. The President was most… Upset."
The Doctor folded his arms and made no noise. He remembered what they had planned and it hit him like cold ice.
"You're not saying anything."
"That's because they made a plan to bring back the Time Lords," The Doctor said gravely. "And I had to stop them."
He was expecting her to shout or to scream but all that came was "Why?"
"They used my old friend. The Master. As a link to pull them from the time war. But to do it would have destroyed the earth. I couldn't let that happen."
"Of course not. Not when the Earth has so much to look forward too."
"Oh yes." The Doctor grinned. "Bruce Henderson, the greatest American President to ever live… Introducing healthcare for free, abolishing poverty, fixing the ozone."
"No… The Ordinary people. Sylvia Pucks rescuing a man who was close to committing suicide, saving his life, bringing him back from the brink of death and being with him as he recovered, not only from the attempt, but until his depression cleared up. It's not always about the big victories you know."
The Doctor smiled. "No… It's not."
"I have to ask… I probably know the answer… But the Gelth?"
"Their forms wasted away. I met them. Back in 1869. With Charles Dickens."
"The one that wrote Great Expectations?"
"I like that human book. What about Harry Potter?"
"Oh… Harvari… Harry Potter is… It's just amazing to see the humans so bonded over something like a piece of literature. It speaks to the hearts."
"Yes it does."
"You sound sad."
"Dalek and Time Lord Ships are exploding around me, I can hear the screams of my children, or my grandchildren as they burn. My friends, my family, my life… It's burning and I can't do a thing about it. Do you really expect me to be over the moon?"
"You're right… Sorry." The Doctor said, tears glistening in his eyes.
"You haven't told me your name,"
"Oh… Have I not? Oh well… Who needs names? It's not important. Never has been." The Doctor said swiping some tears from his eyes. He sniffed slightly.
"No," The Doctor said, defending himself. "I'm not. I promise you."
"You're now lying to me when all I have done is tell you the honest truth."
"I'm sorry, Harvari." The Doctor said. "But I can't tell you the truth. I can't. No. I can't. I can't tell you my name."
"Because… Because I did a terrible thing and I don't want you to hate me."
"Sir, I am dead whether you tell me or not." She said. "A dying Time Lady's wish. Please?"
The Doctor sniffed, trying to keep himself composed. He pursed his lips and stared up and the glowing column where Harvari's voice was coming from.
"I'm the one who killed all of you." He whispered. "I killed the time lords and the daleks. I killed your family. I killed you." He sat down, holding his head in his hands. "I'm… I'm so sorry."
He looked up, tears rolling down his cheeks unable to control the emotion spilling from every fibre in his body. "Yes?"
There was the sound of screaming, fire and an explosion. The TARDIS flared into life. The Doctor held his face in his hands, burying what he was feeling.
He looked up, his vision blurred. Amy was advancing towards him. She dropped to her knees and pulled the Doctor close.
"I couldn't save her." His voice broke. "I couldn't save any of them."
"Sh." Amy whispered, holding him tightly. After a moment the Doctor let out a sigh and stood up suddenly. He wiped his face on his sleeve and bounded around the TARDIS.
"Right," He said. "Rio!" He flicked a few switches and the column began to move up and down, making the familiar noise that filled everyone with a sense of wonderment.
"You can talk to us," Rory said. "If that would make you feel any better. We will listen."
The Doctor looked at the husband and wife. His face broke into a sad smile. "That's not necessary Ponds." He said. He looked back at the console. "I'm an old… Old crabby man with too much stuff in his head for a one hour session with a therapist. No offence."
"I'm a nurse, so none taken," Rory said.
The Doctor chuckled, he pursed his lips before moving away. "Think I'll just go do a few lengths in the pool."
"Okay," Amy grabbed his hand. "You will talk to us, if there is anything on your mind, won't you."
"Oh Pond," The Doctor said, kissing the top of her forehead. "You don't need to listen to an old man whine when you have so much wonder in your life." He smiled softly and left them alone in the console room.